Group of 2,000 citizens issue statement urging release of activist Varavara Rao from jail


PTI, Jul 14, 2020, 7:32 AM IST

Mumbai: A group of about 2,000 concerned citizens on Monday urged that poet and activist Varavara Rao, an accused in the Elgar-Parishad-Maoist links case, be immediately released on bail from a prison in Maharashtra due to his deteriorating health condition.

“The health of poet, litterateur and political rights activist P Varavara Rao, incarcerated for nearly two years in the Bhima Koregaon conspiracy case, has significantly been deteriorating since he had a fall on May 28 in the Taloja jail,” a statement issued by them said. They quoted his family as saying that he is hallucinating, unable to walk and even brush his teeth.

The citizens, including activists, teachers, journalists, students and advocates, urged that Rao be immediately released on bail so that he can receive appropriate medical care and recover from his current illness.

Rao on Monday approached the Bombay High Court seeking temporary bail owing to his deteriorating medical condition
and the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic.

Rao, another activist Anand Teltumbde and eight other activists were arrested in the Elgar Parishad-Maoist link case, which was initially probed by the Pune police and later transferred to the National Investigation Agency in January. The case relates to alleged inflammatory speeches made at the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on December 31, 2017, which, the police claimed, triggered violence the next day near the Koregaon-Bhima war memorial located on the outskirts of the western Maharashtra city.

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